Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Interview and two-book giveaway with Rebecca DeMarino!!

In an uncertain time, Heather Flower faces a choice that will change her life forever
It is 1653 and Heather Flower, a princess of the Montaukett tribe, is celebrating her wedding feast when a rival tribe attacks, killing the groom and kidnapping her.  Though her ransom is paid by an Englishman, she is bound by her captors and left to die—until she finds herself rescued by handsome Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren.

Still tender from her loss, Heather Flower begins to heal in the home of the Hortons, English friends of her people. Torn between her affection for Dirk and her longtime friendship with Ben Horton, Heather Flower must make a difficult choice—stay true to her friend or follow her heart. 

Welcome author Rebecca DeMarino to The Diamond Mine! Rebecca will be giving away a print copy of her first two books in her Southhold Chronicles Series. Today we'll focus on the second book of the series: "To Capture Her Heart." To enter for a chance to win both great books, leave a comment for her! 

Rebecca write about: Love, Legends, and Lore!
Now Let's learn a bit about Rebecca!
Welcome to the Mine, Rebecca! Let's talk about your book. Yhe second book is set in 1653. How did you get the idea to set this story at that point in time?

My time period was set by the series, which is based on the real lives of my ninth great-grandparents. They came over on a little ship called The Swallow in the 1630’s. My plan for the series was to take each book about the Hortons up a decade or two. While researching the first book in the series, A PLACE IN HIS HEART, I discovered a gold nugget of information about Heather Flower, the daughter of the Montuakett sachem, who was kidnapped on her wedding day by a fierce rival tribe. Tradition has it that the Englishman, Lion Gardiner, paid her ransom. The story was too good to ignore!

Wow!! You said it! What type of research did you do for this story?

I do extensive research. I thought that for the second book it wouldn’t be as intense, but I was wrong. Not a bad thing, though, because I love it! So many things changed from decade to decade in seventeenth century New England. And I was intrigued by the fact that Long Island during the 1650’s was literally divided down the middle with the Dutch on the west end and the English on the east end.  And they didn’t always get along! Some research has been done online (amazing what you find in Google!) some I have traveled back to Long Island to discover, and my favorite tool is books! I have stacks of books in my personal library now on the history of Southold, Long Island, New Amsterdam and Connecticut. I would love to have family diaries or letters, but they don’t  exist even in museums for the 1600’s. But I have studied accounts of Plymouth (Plimoth) and other early colonies that are better documented and that helps!

I love the research part for writing historicals, too! I’m not too familiar with the Montauk people. Can you tell us a bit about them, and about your main character, Heather?

The Montauketts were a people who inhabited the south fork of Long Island in the 1600’s. There were several tribes on Long Island and it is said there were four sachems, all brothers. The Montaukett sachem was called the Grand Sachem by the English immigrants because he was the elder and made the final decisions. His daughter was Quashawam, and some have called her Heather Flower. The English called her a princess because she was the daughter of the Grand Sachem – who in the English way of thinking was a king!

What are the main challenges facing Heather?

By the time Heather Flower has been rescued in the opening scene she has witnessed the murder of her groom on her wedding day and she has been left for dead by her captors.  Her rescuers – one Dutch and one English – know she needs to heal but in their attempt to protect her they cannot help falling in love with the beautiful Montauk Princess.

Sounds awesome! Do your characters develop as you write, or do you have a clear idea of them before you start?

A little of both were at work in this story. In reading about the tall and eloquent Montauketts, I knew from the outset what qualities Heather Flower would possess. She was also the daughter of royalty, but as her character developed I discovered she was not spoiled, even though she was revered by her people. And she was not immune to loss.

How much of yourself is in your characters?

That is such a hard question. I think it would be hard for anyone to write without traces of them in it. Heather Flower emerged as someone I admire, but I don’t see much of me in her!

How many books do you plan for this series?

The Southold Chronicles is a three-book series. I just turned in the manuscript for book #3 and I’m very excited about it. The Horton story moves up to 1664 – the year England takes over New Amsterdam on the west end of Long Island and becomes New York City! How fantastic is that?! And of course, as are the first two books, it is historical romance!

You picked a pretty incredible era to write about! What made you decide to write this series?

Growing up, my mother told me stories of my ninth great-grandfather who came over from England in the 1600’s on a ship called The Swallow. In 1999 we discovered a lighthouse was named after him in Southold, L.I. and I took my mother back to see it. We learned so much about him at the lighthouse museum, the library and the historical society and even visited his grave at the cemetery. We were both fascinated to see the family lore come to life. But there was nothing about my ninth great-grandmother - not even her grave. We knew Barnabas was a widower with two young sons when they married, and from there a story jumbled around in my head. And I knew I wanted to give her a voice. From there I wrote  A PLACE IN HIS HEART, my debut novel.

And you've turned your own history into a real treat for your readers! What do you want readers to take away from your stories?

I love writing historical romance because there is something for the romantic, there is something for the historical fan, and there’s something for people who just enjoy a great read. A spiritual theme that seems to weave itself into my stories is this: No matter what your situation is, what the challenges are, God is with you. You might still go through the fire, but He will hold your hand. You will make it.

That's a beautiful theme! What are you working on now?

I turned in my third manuscript to my publisher last night.it will now go through the editorial process so there’s still work to be done. The projects I’ll turn my attention to now are all historical romance!
Thank you so much for having me today! I enjoyed the interview!

And I enjoyed your answers. Thanks so much for sharing some of yourself with us today!  Readers, don't forget to leave a comment for your chance to win two books!

Here's an excerpt from: To Capture Her Heart:

He settled himself atop his own bedding, tucking his musket close to his side. The ground was hard and the night alive with cricket chirps. Somewhere an owl hooted. He propped his hands beneath his head and stared at the heavens. The night was warm and the ink sky a dance of thousands of winking stars. An astral display fell as if the sky had parted. Some Indians believed it to be a sign of travel heroes and he glanced over to the still form of Heather Flower and hoped she’d seen it. He asked God for travel mercies as sleep claimed him.
Heather Flower was awake before the sun rose. The crescent moon had set hours ago, but the crisp stars still illuminated the sky. She crept toward the glow of the fire and sat. She clutched the comb Dirk had given her the day before and began to pull it through the tangles in her hair. Strand by strand the snarls came undone. As the men began to stir around her, she finished a long braid over her shoulder.

Now here's a short bio of Rebecca, followed by her contact links:


Rebecca DeMarino is a historical romance author who lives in the Pacific Northwest. She inherited her love of baking and gardening from her mother, a love of horses, reading and writing from her dad, and the wanderlust gene from both parents. To Capture Her Heart, her second novel in The Southold Chronicles series, releases from Revell on July 7th. You can find her at www.RebeccaDeMarino.com, @RebeccaDeMarino, on Facebook and Pinterest, or in the kitchen baking ginger cookies or apple pie!
Rebecca DeMarino, writing Love, Legends, and Lore!
Join me on FacebookPinterest and Twitter!

Purchase Links:
 Amazon   B&N  CBD


Ann Ellison said...

I haven't read any of Rebecca's books but I am definitely going to add her books to my to read list. I did enjoy the interview. I would love to win a copy of her book.

mary koester said...

Both books sound very interesting! I haven't read any of Rebecca's work, but she is on my TBR list.


Anonymous said...

I love reading historical fiction and since I am from Long Island I am really interested in reading Rebecca's books. Thanks fort the chance to win. Have a blessed day.
marypopmom (at) yahoo (dot) com

Karen said...

Would love to have To Capture Her Heart. I've read A Place In His Heart and loved it! Thank you for this opportunity!

Renee Blare said...

Hi Rebecca! It's great to see you at the Mine. :)

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Thank you! And you are one of the first that I am sharing this with, but I will be at Burton's Bookstore, Greenport, LI for a book signing 4th of July! The Tall Ships will be there that weekend and it will be so much fun! If you are in the area I'd love for you to stop by (1p to 4p) and say hello!! Greenport is an incorporated part of Southold and is featured in my third book!

Rebecca DeMarino said...

I'm so glad you loved A Place In His Heart!! Thank you!

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Thank you, Ann! good luck!

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Thank you, Mary! It's nice to meet you here!

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Hi, Renee!! Good to see you! Having fun - his is a beautiful place to be!!

Amy C said...

What a lovely interview with Rebecca! I can't wait to read her books. They sound fabulous!

campbellamyd at gmail dot com

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Thank you so much, Amy!

Deanna Stevens said...

Nice to meet you Rebecca.. Your books sound so good! I'd enjoy reading them.. Thanks for gifting the copies...
dkstevensne AToutlookD OTcOM

Rebecca DeMarino said...

It is so nice to meet you, too, Deanna! Thank you so much!

trosado said...

I have both of these books on my TBR list and can't wait to get to them. The covers are absolutely beautiful!

Rebecca DeMarino said...

Thank you! I love the covers Revell did - they captured the stories so beautifully!!

Anonymous said...

Great interview, Rebecca! Looking forward to hosting your interview on http://WritersOnReading.blogspot.ca and fibding out what you'Re reading, and, yes, your books are in my TBA list. I'd love to win. ;) deirdrelockhart (AT) yahoo.ca

Cynthia A. Lovely said...

Congrats, Rebecca, on your second novel!

Peggy Trotter said...

Welcome to the Mine, Rebecca! So glad to have you here!